Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Varshaa: Rain Melodies




In one of his stories, the celebrated Malayalam writer T. Padmanabhan writes of a man who loves to listen to the sounds of rain so much that he takes a cassette of rain-sounds with him abroad. When he feels homesick, he listens to the sounds of rain- the sudden outburst, the pitter patter of rain on the roof, on the ground and to the sounds of occasional thunderbolts. The rain has always held a fascination for artists and is a constantly celebrated theme in Indian literature and films. 

The theme of the rain is explored by the artists Jason J.Nair and Aby in Varshaa: Rain Melodies, a collection of five rain melodies that inspire both creativity and nostalgia. Though it bursts on you unawares and creates plenty of inconvenience, the rain serves as a muse or a source of inspiration for many writers and artistes. The rain pitter-pattering outside, the sound of thunderbolts flashes of thunder across the sky, the wait for the rains symbolised by the dance of the peacocks or the memories of getting drenched unexpectedly, there are so many threads that come together on listening to these rain melodies.


Monday, February 13, 2017

Eternal love



The morning was beautiful. She woke up early even before the alarm clock started ringing. A miracle.Usually it woke up her neighbors before it did her with the continuous music. She always made the alarm as  part of the background  of her dream. This deafness to alarms resulted in her getting up late every day.  
This day was different. She could feel it in the soft freshness of the morning air. From the balcony, she viewed the morning air with surprise. Could this be the day when he would come to her? She had a lot of intuition about these things and felt hopeful. 
She couldn’t believe that this is the same city crowded with protesters over something over the other in the daytime. The white building of the state looked lovely this morning. Not even a single sound. 
She stood there for sometime.  She heard the hooting of a distant train. What silence. Only a few people like the newspaper boys moved here and there. She decided to go on a morning walk. She changed her clothes and was out walking in a few minutes.
It was not yesterday that he left the city. She didnt know here he was.  If he was here, she will see him on the morning walk across the park. What all things I want to tell you, my dear? But the situation was not as hopeless as she made it to be. 
He was just a phone call away. But what prevented her was her shyness, what if they become lovers? She couldn’t face him. Still she resolved to tell him how much he means to her, that not a day passes without his thoughts and that she would do anything to have him in her life even as a friend. 
It was this obsession, that feeling that there was something between them that was unique, something that happened only once in a lifetime, that magic that will never happen again if she lost him.She knew that from the first day that she met him, that there was something about him that she loved beyond words, through her silences.

Memories came and visited her. What was this madness that never let her spend a day without thinking about him? Every day was like this-thoughtfulness, indecisiveness and finally sobbing just before going to sleep, hugging the pillow. Night time was for writing down what all preposterous things he meant to her, while morning took all these thoughts away. 
Obsessed with him, she felt that this came out of her denial of some natural feeling towards him. At times, she had this gut feeling that it was mutual; he also felt the same. But then what?

Even that day in the rain was evidence to this. They were sitting in that coffee shop sipping hot coffee when she said in half jest" let’s walk in the rain". Before she could even think, he’d got up and was out in the rain. There was another couple who walked before them, hugging each other closely and for a moment she wanted to walk with him like that.
"Look at them", she said. They shied away from each other thought they were closely aware of each other. That night, she was a little crazy as she wrote about those little things in her diary. Suddenly, her phone rang. Strangely it was not him but her fiancé, who had called.

“What happened to you? You don’t speak soft to me anymore? You speak like a stranger, nowadays”. She knew that she didn’t do this deliberately, for her fiancé meant the world to her. Five years is not a short period of time and with every passing year and the distance that separated them, they had stuck together supporting each other everyday. 
On days of idleness, he would call her and ask her to study for her exams, for which they were appearing together. That exam meant a lot to both of them. Now both are lost and that too because of her foolishness. She could understand losing her new friend or obsession but her fiancé that was like saying drawing a boundary can make land into two nations. 
Still this morning she felt hopeful. Her life would have an answer, not this endless maze of problems, coming one after the other. She couldn’t call him and ask him to come and meet her. May be a real meeting can cure her obsession. It made her nervous, the thought of meeting him. 
She dreaded even that thought but that’s what she always wanted to do. Each and every day, she wanted this meeting, this resolution of her confusions but nothing happened. She went and sat at her favourite place in the park, on the stone-bench beneath that chempaka tree. The flowers gave off an intoxicating fragrance. Her phone rang. Her fiancé.

“Why are you not talking to me? You remember this date. This was the day when I proposed to you way back in college. What has come over you?”
“So? She asked.
“With marriage in December, how can you be playing such games?”.

“What if I don’t want to marry you?”
“Now dear, please be careful. If that’s what you wish, it’s fine with me. But what about the parents? What are you going to tell them?”
“That I will do, you don’t have to worry”.

While she was talking, she saw someone familiar walking towards her. That was him. She cut the phone and ran towards him. “Where were you? I was worried!”He smiled and put his arms around her. She was sobbing so hard. She couldn’t control herself. He  held her close. He moved his face close to hers and kissed her. First kiss. 
All her desperation was gone. The agony over whether she will meet him or not, the pain of his absence and her repressing her all feelings, everything was gone. He took her on a long drive in the city before driving to the beach far from the city. She chatted about all the things that had happened in his absence.“Where do you want to go now? He asked her.“The beach. I love the seashore, though it makes me serious about life”, she replied. 
He smiled and kissed her again. She responded fully to his desires and glowed in his love. “Don’t go anywhere again”, she pleaded. At the beach, they stayed in the water, hand in hand. The evening sky was tinted red. The ochre light of the evening, with that secluded beach made him daring enough to kiss her in the open. 
“I love you baby. I will never leave you alone”, he said. He led her to towards the sea, into the deeper waters. Now she became afraid. He hugged her tight and laughed aloud with each thrashing wave that splashed against them.  

She decided to speak to her parents when she got home. Her marriage could wait; she wanted to be sure herself whom was that she loved more, her fiance or the one whom she found anew. It was her dream come true and she thought that she did choose right.Looking at the lights, what she felt was that this was a very special day of her life.


Akashdeep













It is on such a beautiful night
That she comes home again
Led by the lamp set for her
On the terrace by her husband.

She stands in front of the tulsi,
Where she prayed everyday
To let her go first to God
Nor to lead a life without him.

Then she looks at her husband
Who lies asleep by the lamp
On his favourite armchair,
With a heart heavy with woe.

Dressed in red like a bride
With jewels all glittering
And eyes dancing with love,
She comes close to him.

She kisses his sleeping face
And caresses his stubble,
She runs her fond fingers
And plays with his soft hair.

She hums a delightful tune,
With a lamp in her brown hands,
“Where shall I put my lamp?
Where shall I set my heart?”

"I set my eyes on you once,
I haven't had any thought since,
You lit my life with your love
It was the festival of love

You did not hold me by force
You held in your arms gently
Nor have I left you alone
But am with you always".

The lamp goes out, dawn breaks
He sighs and smiles in his sleep,
But she leaves without any trace,
Only in his dreams and sad eyes.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Priceless



There were times when I have struggled a balance between my dreams of material wealth and spiritual happiness. Not that there were many possessions, a bare room that looked more like a scholar's study than a girl's bedroom but there was always a need to keep it spick and span.

There was this craving for possessions later always caused by an awareness of a lack looking at the wealthy and the rich. Then now, when it is possible to have possessions and objects that one wants, this strange heart wants nothing but to be left at peace, to know the wisdom of simplicity and of keeping away from needless clutter.

It wants not to learn the price of new desirables but to keep against its heart the priceless value of timeworn possessions, worn-out words, tired dreams and old loves of words, coffee, wine, music and  you.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Wisdom

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You were a wanderer who left behind your hometown to start a new life, to prove yourself in the eyes of your near and dear ones. I was a dreamer who could listen with wonder to your ramblings and walk with you everywhere, one who could go places without leaving my favourite armchair. 

In the many years of absence, you and I travelled together across many exotic lands. From these wanderings, we have gathered so much of wisdom and have arrived at a place of mutual understanding. How we have changed in our lives holding close only values that which matter to both you and me!

In the long years you have been away, I have glimpsed you in many forms but not in real but I still remember your tenacity in sticking to your dreams and nothing else. For me, who have lately started following your footsteps, the world looks new and vistas inviting. 

May be this is not a dream at all but a piece taken out of tattered lives like yours and mine, but when these words come to fruition, it is more perfect than anything else heard, felt or seen.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Togetherness


It was good to see them together after their scars faded away. It was forever, she thought when she had etched his name on her heart, the palms of her hands in a mehndi design or on every scrap of paper that she came across. 

Destiny said otherwise and the one that smiled with love at her was even more smitten. In the meantime, this first love was forgotten. But after a lapse of a few years,  look at their chemistry, it looks magical, like out of a dream. 

In her eyes that look up to him, in his smile slightly older but contented, in their perfect blend together, there is this miracle that after a battle of egos, the magic that makes a breakup look unreal. 


Thursday, February 09, 2017

Tonight


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Tonight, it was your words, chocolate and butter, that made me drunk.Words that would bring back your bold gaze that could read more of me and weave a tapestry of desire.

I still wonder why I would spend hours in front of the mirror wondering at what you saw in me and go over in the mind, a flash of your childhood smile.

But all this magic faded away and we became two strangers fighting about what belongs to whom. Still it was your words, chocolate and butter, that made me drunk with delight, tonight.

Pic Courtesy:things sweet and wonderful to eat. wordpress.com

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Hiraeth

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It was as if a long-forgotten dream had flashed right in front of my eyes that evening. A glimpse of that last day in December when you I saw you last, the day we spent hours at the bookstore just because you wanted to buy me a book, the last time you had held me close and the day you left so as to make our dream true.

What I saw was none of these but an opulent durbar, the dancers and the audience who were screaming praises of my own name when I looked at my demure queen with a quiet pride knowing her to be mine only. There she was, smiling at me. Though veiled, the silhouette of her cheeks could be seen against her red veil. 

As we walked side by side, the crowds roared. We climbed those ancient steps and looked in the huge mirrors as if it was part of an old dream, as if two broken pieces were put together in a perfect shape for an instant. With a strange wonder, I recognised an old home, a place of no return, one that I lost long back return as we stand chattering inside a palace that gives a strange sense of having lived here long before.

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Years

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May be it was part of my bravado to make  fun of love and how lovers feel when they meet after a long time.

Though the hourglass looks still, the days have fled so fast as if on wings. Here we are, the writer and the written, the wanderer and the dreamer, face to face, eye to eye.

I don't know where you have been and whom you have met but I would like to hear what passed day by day, hour by hour, second by second.

I might have to fight back all the tears of absence that have weighed my heart and you may have to slow down the countless words that never found a way to the lips.

But god willing, when that day finally comes,  I want it to remain still like forever and I want to tell you for sure that I know what a love story really feels like.

Monday, February 06, 2017

The Wanderer




 

This heart has been a wanderer who loves to ramble and find ways where none existed before. It never understands the wisdom of other’s words nor can it choose anything other than what it wants for itself. Sometimes, it creates raging fires in places where a soft little word would have done.

Not that there were no mazes in the olden days. There were many that it burnt down or flew past, though not with a victorious smile or swelling pride but with quiet equanimity; it didn’t have much left behind to boast of.

For years, it has searched for beauty in all places- in the serenity of nature, in the spontaneity of a child’s smile, or in the most beautiful thoughts where it has always dwelt. It has often wandered in the serenest places on earth, where it took in with amazement, the feeling of being so minute in a huge beautiful world. Sometimes, it has wandered alone, partly to its dismay and partly to create a pride in solitude. There were also times, when in another wanderer’s eyes, it read solace, warmth and strange delight.

A new strength came from a kindred spirit in whose eyes, the world was made anew or paths made merrier with zesty songs and bright sunshine. With a soulmate, an anam cara, it has often dreamt of wandering again through the same mazes differently.Though there might be new invites from around, the cascading waterfalls, the beautiful mountain-tops, the endless beaches or beautiful fields of green delight, it needs a soul friend to listen to its endless amazement.

Though there might not be many words and many hurdles to jump over, this heart still wants to watch the stars fade away all along with its soul companion.Often it dreams of flights across all its mazes just to find solace in the comfort of a friend and at times, it feels that the time has passed and the magic gone. Despite of constant mistakes while wandering, it seeks within itself an answer, to wait patiently for its dream to come back again.

May be this heart would hum a new song or dance a new dance, a never-seen wonder of rejoice when it comes home, all safe in the arms of its soul friend. Till that day, this wanderer searches on weary faces a semblance of its dream, feels down when it finds nothing common and ends every journey with heavy feet and grim thoughts. Yet, with a spring of delight it waits on every corner just to see what surprise life holds in its sudden trips and turns, turning a deaf ear to the noises that are around it the whole time. 




Leaves in his hair

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The tiny yellow leaves in his grey hair made me feel a stange tenderness for him. To run my fingers through his hair and to feel a strange closeness that hit me like a thunderstorm, the first time I gazed into his eyes.

May be it was because he was waiting under the trees, may be because though he said he didn't wait much, but his eyes flickered with a strange delight when he heard my footsteps. When he looked up every time, it was like I could hear the roar of the thunderstorm.

I don't think I need much except this roar of the thunderstorm daily.

Sunday, February 05, 2017

I Love You

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I am a wanderer.

Lusty for life
Often aimless
Vistas numerous
Endless journeys.

You are my dream.
Only destination
Unless you disagree.

Saturday, February 04, 2017

Mine

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If I hadn't met you, I would not have known what it meant to be in love, the meaning of three little words, which you used to say so effortlessly daily when it has taken me ages to even utter those little words.

If I hadn't known you, I would never have understood what true companionship meant, the nights spent all talking, watching movies and fighting like hell.

If I hadn't loved you, I would never have known this sinking feeling that comes when I hear someome criticise you though you are no longer mine to own or to defend.

Memories

Your sky blue shirt with chocolate stains, your cheeks that were smudged daily with my parting kiss, your eyes that lately were filled with a longing beyond words; 

The songs at midnight, how you croon the blues, then in those amazing days the things that you did to please me and made me sing those melodies that make you laugh. 

These eyes that never meet yours scared of what you see in them, afraid of what it knows to be true, too shy to show what it really want to say in words, despite of your pestering. 

May be, it means all the things that you don't want me to say and you don't want to say either because of strange misgivings. 

But when you say those three little words, it's like magic and the world lights up in zero time. 

Friday, February 03, 2017

Deja Vu






Image : www.keralaholidays.com
 

I don't think I have been to this place before but as I look around I get a feeling of deja vu. The blue waters and the houseboats look a very familiar sight, a place I might have been to many times.

May be if I stayed around, the waves might tell me from whose dreams I stole you, through whose heart I heard the song of a home of rest ahead. May be if I stayed around, it might tell me more about you, the one I might want to hear more about.

I am so immersed in the trance of the blue waters that I hardly see a stranger smiling at me. May be that's my answer or may be not.